Muhammadu Buhari has taken the side of his kinsmen, the Fulani and is deploying the Nigeria Armed Forces to defend their criminalities in Southern Nigeria. He continues to ask for peace and order. Fulani are the disrupters of peace and order in Southern Nigeria. He has never once made a pronouncement for Fulani to stop mass killings and banditry.
He has instead been mobilizing the security assets of the nation to defend the Fulani herdsmen lurking in the forests. Fulani do not own land in Nigeria but they have expressed a commitment of seizing others’ land to force a physical presence in the South of Nigeria.
The tragedy of Muhammadu Buhari’s mischief is not just the abuse of his powers as President and Commander-in-Chief, but that he is encouraging and taking sides in conflicts between ethnicities in Nigeria even as president. Buhari is deploying the institutions of state to support the hegemonic pursuits of his ethnic Fulani and causing social disharmony across Nigeria.
The elite of the South and Middle Belt know and understand very well the mischievous actions of Muhammadu Buhari on behalf of Fulani but they have not called him out or mounted any strong opposition to his malicious gambits. They do nothing in the face of the sustained terror and killings that communities are facing.
While Buhari is busy seizing more powers to himself and mounting the accoutrements of war to further Fulani domination in their territories, the elite are distracted, holding conferences in Abuja and everywhere, pleading for more states, asking for the devolution of more powers to states, increased revenue allocation, true federalism etc.
But these are now yesterday’s issues, not the existential concerns that trouble today’s Nigeria. Those matters have been clearly overtaken by the urgency of Buhari’s increasing dictatorship, his unceasing power grabs and the existential threat to Nigeria arising from all that.
The deployment of troops for a second conquest of Biafra presents an immediate and potent threat to the corporate existence of Nigeria, far beyond the issues of power devolution to states or even true federalism. The massacre that just happened at Igangan town, Ibarapa, Oke Ogun area of Oyo state demonstrates quite clearly that the Fulani are unrelenting in their determination to kill and cause mayhem in southern communities.
Buhari has been taking decisions and implementing policies never debated or approved by the national parliament. He is giving “shoot at sight” orders to police and the army that brazenly violates the laws of Nigeria.
He is implementing an ethnic cleansing policy in the Nigeria Armed Forces and in the process brought upon our country, the real prospect of sacking an overlarge number of flag officers of southern descent.
Buhari is engaged in a secretive and massive internal deployment of troops the purpose of which is not disclosed to parliament or the nation. He has just banned the use of twitter in Nigeria, a social media application, just because he has a personal spat with the American Company.
Everyday we watch with trepidation, the creeping danger of autocracy and dictatorship, but the elite of the South are distracted, concerned more with succession politics than the corporate survival of their country. While their country is being set up for a nationwide inferno, the politicians of the South and Middle Belt concern themselves with grub.
It is because of the insouciance of the elected elite that political power in the South is moving into the control of non-state actors and revolutionaries like Nnamdi Kanu and Sunday Igboho, who clearly identify with the people’s need for protection from a marauding Fulani aided by Government. Their campaigns for the creation of a different and abiding identity for their ethnicities carries with it the real prospect of leading to Nigeria’s dissolution. More and worse will follow these men until a truly mendacious group of zero-sum nihilists seize the national space and own its governing structures.
The elite of the South conveniently ignore the unprecedented seizures by Buhari of the national security machinery to serve Fulani ethnic purposes. They all watch unconcerned as the Federal Government uses state security personnel to brutalize lawful and peaceful agitators in the South without recourse to law.
Government has tried to rationalize the killings by soldiers at Lekki Tollgates, erase records, destroy evidence and tried to rewrite the books to prove that it didn’t happen. We keep gazing the other way while brutalities and killings have been going on in the Southeast for six years.
The Fulani agenda and their hegemonic pursuits have become the overriding business and pursuit of Government under Buhari. In furtherance of Fulani political and economic interests, soldiers are being deployed, munitions are being moved and lives are being put in harm’s way to achieve the interests of one ethnic group against the larger interest of Nigeria.
And so we watch helplessly as a manifestly malicious President work assiduously to sow hatred while Fulani destroy communities. The best we get is a mischievous President admonishing the terrorized and abused citizens to remain law abiding and peaceful.
No politician is daring to stand up to Buhari’s mischief. They are so engrossed in the engagement of entitlements to selves to tell him what’s what. This is the reason why the Nnamdi Kanu’s and Sunday Igboho’s are seizing the moment to stand up for their people. It is also the reason why this political dispensation won’t survive. The guns won’t be able to hold the surge and the groundswell of power that will be unleashed by the youth of Southern Nigeria.
Unable to face up to the challenges posed by a dictator and Fulani ethnic champion, Southern elders and politicians are receding into their ethnic cocoons to seek validation and relevance. They watch without understanding its portent, the gradual ceding of the national political space to non elected ethnic denizens like Sunday Igboho and Nnamdi Kanu. And the cry across the land is that the time for change is now. The youth will refuse to accept without a fight, the hegemonic designs of Fulani on Nigeria.
No state Governor, without having to resort to bribes, can mobilize a crowd of 500 to the streets of the cities of Nigeria. Nnamdi Kanu without being present in the country, calls up an armed group of 50,000 youth. A crowd of no less than a quarter of a million people, young and old, trooped out last weekend to welcome Sunday Igboho to the town of Ado Ekiti. We are witnessing raw political power that no elected official has ever been able to display in Nigeria.
So there is now a genuine disconnect between the aspirations of politicians for 2023 and the expressions for change and reconfiguration of the nation before that date. The demand of the youth of the South is that the country be dismembered before that date.
So for the South, the general elections of 2023 are already foreclosed, no doubt. INEC offices in the Southeast are being razed. The preparations by Government for elections in 2023 and the determination of the young ones to close Nigeria before that date run along as parallel pursuits.
We have walked this road before, so no one who is adult in Nigeria today can say he does not know where this road leads. It leads to deep conflict and sociopolitical dissonance as we are experiencing now and then if not well managed, to final disintegration of the country called Nigeria. So the way to keep Nigeria is to compel Buhari to imbibe democratic solutions and submit to a national discourse on the catastrophe that we all see coming.
Why are we so afraid to put voice to our fears and confront this growing authoritarianism in our democracy? We lose democracy if we don’t stand up to bullies. One man is deploying state assets to fight his ethnic wars which he himself is implicated in instigating and we all stand by gazing at ourselves and watch the unfolding destruction?
It should be evident to southern politicians that Buhari desires a military conquest of Igboland and the pacification of all Southern Nigeria for the unimpeded rule of the Fulani. Islamic Jihad is only an alibi to impose Fulani rule. His challenge has been how to achieve this aim without the personnel of the armed forces demobilizing to their ethnic ramparts.
Meanwhile, we will keep watching as roughnecks and street gangs take charge to become leaders of a dawning Southern Nigeria.
As the political elite remain too scared to face-up to a jaded oligarchy determined to erase our freedoms and take our land, we look up to the youth for strength and direction. If we don’t find the will to stand up to Buhari and the Fulani, surely the street gangs will.
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